Individuals grow in relationships and I am interested in helping couples develop loving, constructive and creative relationship environment in which growth can flourish in satisfying ways.
Over 30 years of scientific couples research by John Gottman and others has shown what leads to successful relationships and what destroys relationships. This study has produced scientifically validated tools which allow couples to dramatically change the course of their relationship for the better.
I utilize Gottman methodology and EMDR in my work with couples.
Common concerns and specializations:
- Learning to communicate effectively and openly
- Expressing love, affection, respect, and support
- Changing old habits and patterns that don't work
- Escaping from repeated cycles of conflict
- Sex/intimacy concerns
- Parenting challenges (and new parenting)
- Household, chores, and family-work balance
- Working out specific issues that seem impossible to resolve
- Learning to compromise
- Finances and money
- Coping with crises, loss, illness, and death
- Productively dealing with betrayal, blame or guilt
- Pre-marital counseling
- Figuring out if it's time to end a relationship and move on
- Learning to grow as couple without giving up individual dreams and goals
My work with each couple begins with assisting you both in taking the time needed to clarify and define your goals for therapy during the intake sessions. Then we together create a plan/path based on those goals. You will see the patterns keeping you stuck in the same recurring struggles and how to approach them differently. The ways in which we approach your goals are tailored to the unique people that you are, and to the relationship you are wanting to create together.
It doesn’t have to take years to manifest and maintain that connection and spark again, but it does take focused attention and commitment to prioritizing your relationship.
On average I see couples for 15 to 25 sessions, ranging from 4mos-1year. Upon ending therapy, some couples choose to continue with sessions over time (1-4x yr.), for relapse prevention.
I work at uncovering and breaking unhealthy cycles, and negative self-perceptions, that get in the way of your happiness.
My goal is that you develop a more expansive, positive and compassionate sense of self. This renewed sense of self you walk away with is stronger and clearer about who you are, what you want, and how to move forward in your life so you can get it!
Common concerns and specializations:
- Depression/isolation/suicidal thoughts
- Anxiety/Panic attacks
- Obsessive thoughts/ruminating thoughts
- Anger/Emotional reactivity
- Relationship troubles
- Family cutoff/ Family conflict
- Social skills/ Social struggles
- Abuse/Trauma (past or present)
My work is informed by theories of Contextual family systems theory, Cognitive Behavioral Theory, Motivational Interviewing, Collaborative Problem Solving and Trauma informed care.
You can expect me to be warm, nonjudgmental and interactive while helping with your issues. I'm committed to creating safety and confidentiality in our sessions. People of all cultures and sexual orientations are most welcome.
EMDR is an integrative approach that has been proven effective for the treatment of trauma. Whether your "if only" is your relationship, finances, career, kids, health or past hurts, EMDR undoes the frozen negative beliefs in a powerful way that is different than talk therapy and often expedites your results.
You don't have to live this way! You truly can put your "past in the past." Your nightmares can cease, you can eliminate panic attacks, you can reclaim your life.
What is EMDR?
EMDR is a unique, nontraditional form of psychotherapy designed to diminish negative feelings associated with memories of traumatic events. Unlike most forms of talk therapy, EMDR focuses less on the traumatic event itself and more on the disturbing emotions and symptoms that result from the event. Treatment includes a hand motion technique used by the therapist to guide the client’s eye movements from side to side, similar to watching a pendulum swing.
During trauma our brain processes and stores memories incorrectly. This incorrect storage can lead to past memories feeling very present. Related or unrelated stimuli in the present can lead to clients reacting as they did at the time of trauma. The brain feels if the past disturbing event is happening currently.
The goal of EMDR is to fully process past experiences and sort out the emotions attached to those experiences. Negative thoughts and feelings that are no longer useful are replaced with positive thoughts and feelings that will encourage healthier behavior and social interactions.
What to expect?
In the early stages of therapy, will will discuss your problems and symptoms but you won’t necessarily have to reveal all the details of your traumatic experience(s). Instead, I will help you focus on related negative thoughts and feelings that you are still experiencing, and decide which of these beliefs are still relevant and which ones you would like to replace with positive thoughts and beliefs. You will learn techniques to help you deal with disturbing feelings. Then I will guide you through a process known as desensitization. While keeping the memory of a painful or traumatic event in mind, you will follow my back-and-forth finger movements with your eyes. The purpose of this technique is to help you fully process your negative feelings and begin to recognize that you no longer need to hold on to some of them. Future sessions are devoted to reinforcing and strengthening positive feelings and beliefs until you get to a point where you can bring up memories of the traumatic event without experiencing the negativity that brought you to therapy in the first place.
short video about EMDR: